I’m all for devoted mothers but this was special. Mama Bear kind of special.
We live on a hobby farm and at one time had a brace of Moscovy ducks. I had to look this up but did you know that a group of ducks can be called a brace, badelynge, bunch or a flock?
The females are blessed with the job of keeping the eggs warm for a month while staring at the blank wall of a barn that never talks back but they don’t even get a special name. That seems wrong, somehow.
Our ducks were wonderful mothers. If you’ve read Make Way for Ducklings you have the right idea. If you haven’t, go read it. It’s short.
One day we stumbled onto a nest of eggs. Maybe this was a whole brace of eggs. I’m not sure. I’m talking dozens. I’m talking a sea of white orbs. I’m talking Egg Mountain.
We couldn’t count them all.
We couldn’t count them all partly because there were two ducks sitting on them. Yeah, weird.
At least they had someone to talk to while waiting for the coming ducklings.
Twenty-one ducklings hatched.
But there aren’t DNA tests for ducklings (well, not on our farm for sure) and we had two ducks with all these babies. Who belonged to whom?
Neither mama was giving up the babies so they worked together. Both lead the way with a long winding line of yellow fuzzy ducklings waddling behind. Twenty-one ducklings makes a long line.
We added more than a bunch to our duck flock. We’d collected a whole badelynge.
Don’t you think those mamas deserved a more amazing name than duck?